Operating as a luxury eyewear brand under a unique philosophy and perspective while being devoted towards a vision of “weird beauty” and high-end experimentation, if you have a penchant for sunglasses, you probably have heard of this brand.
Having Korean roots, the premier eyewear designer brand launched its seventh and first flagship store in the US at The Big Apple. With designer Rafael de Cardenas, featuring an exhibition with Netherlands furniture designer Moooi, the store got a uniquely artistic take on traditional retail.
Born with a straightforward mission of selling quirky oversized sunglasses while primarily targeting the Asian market, the label has extended into several directions since its inception going from experimental to synonymous with innovation.
Named “The Visitor, the Gentle Monster NYC outlet paints a realistic picture of a metaphoric future with faith and hope as themes depicted through different color shades with new and unique features.
Fabricated between October 2015 to Jan 2016, here are a few creative inspirations/ observations brought forward to you by the Creative NYC team on the store’s opening:
A SCI-FI FICTIONAL IMAGE
Taking the concept of an advanced world a bit further, the Gentle Monster NYC outlet envisions a future where earth and moon drift apart. This unique theme isn’t only one-of-a-kind but also puts visitors’ thinking minds at work while setting a mesmerizing appeal.
PASTEL EARTHY TONES WITH UNIQUE SCULPTURES
With faith and hope as heroes of the entire store theme, light and earthly colors were used to represent these feelings with the use of branched structures and eccentric installations in line with the concept of the store- a narrative where humans return to Mars and a new earth in which there have been dramatic changes to the environment. The existential and psychedelic installations offer an insight into the experimental and innovative philosophy of the brand that focuses on the real, metaphorical future.
Placement of sculptures and creative installations was another challenge. Although the props and visual creatives are powerful enough to draw attention, the challenge was to unite them as one without taking away their individuality and the store’s narrative. In no way could one block the other or fall out of place to take the limelight away from the story’s protagonist: Sunglasses. A massive media wall entices passing people to gaze in, while the art installations beyond the windows inspire a genuine curiosity for space and the world within.
PLAY WITH VISUAL DYNAMICS
The brand’s ethos is to provide every person with a pair of glasses that allows them to embody the duality of being. Reflecting the store-as-an-art-gallery approach to shopping, the new shop mixes elements like kinetic sculptures and installations.
The 6,000 square-feet space at 70 Wooster Street, New York, is about the experimental and immersive experience. Taking inspiration from Chapter 13, the drift created between earth and moon as per the Hebrew Lunar calendar, the thought-provoking artwork with a rhapsody of color and texture stood out successfully for the Gentle Monster NYC store. Another interesting take away from the store is that the installations are built by robots and engineered in a specific way to keep the mood, smell, and location coordinated and complementary to the Gentle Monster experience.